The DHS has now published its final rule in the Federal Register, outlining a raft of fee increases for the programs it is in charge of effective Dec. 23, 2016.
But there appears to be very good news for us Canadians who file our Form I-192 in search of a I-194 waiver. Since our applications are made directly with DHS, and not the USCIS as they would be for foreign nationals who require visas, it appears that the $585.00 fee for when Canadian citizens apply is NOT increasing, and staying put!
Why did this happen? Well, if you take the time to read on, you will learn as I did, that the squeaky wheel indeed does get the grease. That means that an ASTUTE commenter, bless his/her heart, made a comment that influenced the final rule making. Read on...
What resulted, and it is now official, is that there are now 2 classes of fees for our waivers.
Link to Federal Register Final Rule:
And here is the section dealing with fees for the Form I-192 and the rationale for the final rule:
“P. APPLICATION FOR ADVANCE PERMISSION TO ENTER AS A NONIMMIGRANT, FORM I-192, AND APPLICATION FOR WAIVER OF PASSPORT AND/OR VISA, FORM I-193
In the NPRM, DHS proposed to increase the fee for the Application for Advance Permission to Enter as a Nonimmigrant, Form I-192, and Application for Waiver of Passport and/or Visa, Form I-193, from $585 to $930. See proposed 8 CFR 103.7(b)(1)(i)(P); 81 FR 26938. The proposed fee increase was the result of application of the standard USCIS fee methodology to this benefit request. In the FY 2016/2017 fee review, USCIS grouped these benefit requests with other similar benefit requests, specifically, Forms I-191, I-212, I-601, and I-612.
One commenter stated that for certain filers, CBP, and not USCIS, adjudicates the benefit request. The commenter stated that it would be unfair to increase Start Printed Page 73307the fee for Form I-192 applications adjudicated by CBP, because those adjudications do not increase USCIS costs. The commenter stated that the proposed increase in the fee for Form I-192 would burden Canadian and Bermudan nonimmigrant waiver applicants in particular, because unlike other nonimmigrant waiver applicants who submit their applications at the same time as visa applications at no additional charge, Canadians and Bermudans do not require a visa to enter the United States, and thus pay the full filing fee to submit the waiver application. The commenter stated that an increase in the filing fee will hurt local economies in border towns because “every dollar spent on a waiver application is a dollar not spent on tourism or retail.” The commenter did not provide further data or analysis on the potential impact of the proposed fee increase on such economies.
In response to this comment, DHS is not implementing the fee increase proposed in the NPRM with respect to those Forms I-192 filed with and processed by CBP, and all Forms I-193. CBP uses the fee revenue from these forms to defray its own costs related to such processing. The FY 2016/2017 fee review and resulting proposed fee change was based on USCIS's costs for processing inadmissibility waivers. Therefore, under this final rule, DHS adjusts only the fee for those Forms I-192 filed with and processed by USCIS. Consequently, Form I-192 will have two fees—$585 for those filed with CBP and $930 for those filed with USCIS. New 8 CFR 103.7(b)(1)(i)(P). All filings of Form I-193 are processed by CBP and thus DHS will also not adjust the current $585 fee. New 8 CFR 103.7(b)(1)(i)(Q).”